The RCMP is investigating reports an officer made a Facebook post saying Colten Boushie “got what he deserved.”
According to APTN News an RCMP officer on the Prairies posted the message, which said the shooting of the 22-year-old Indigenous man on a Saskatchewan farm should never have been about race.
Boushie, from the Red Pheasant First Nation, was shot and killed in 2016. Gerald Stanley, 56, was acquitted of second-degree murder in a verdict last week by an all-white jury, spurring protests across the country in what many believe was a racially motivated decision.
The female officer who made the post claims to police a First Nations community.
The RCMP told the Star that there are no officers with the name linked to the Facebook account, and didn’t confirm whether the woman worked as an officer under another name.
“Too bad the kid died but he got what he deserved. How many of us work on or near reserves and are getting fed up with the race card being used every time someone gets caught breaking the law?,” she said.
The comment was posted in a Facebook group called “News Stories that Matter to or May Impact RCMP,” and has since been deleted.
APTN did not disclose the person’s identity, but said two sources shared screenshots of the posting and revealed who the officer is.
“Obviously, this remark is absolutely appalling and unacceptable,” Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale said in a teleconference with journalists Thursday.
The RCMP’s statement in response to the story said on- and off-duty members must behave in accordance with the force’s code of conduct and that a member’s use of the internet for social networking is subject to the same standards.
It said members must avoid compromising the integrity of the RCMP or portraying themselves or the organization in a disgraceful or discreditable manner. When concerns about disrespectful content believed to be written by an RCMP employee are raised, “they are and will be investigated and addressed.”
“The RCMP is once again reminding people that they can and will be held responsible for their communications, both in-person and on-line, and police will investigate any complaints of suspected criminal behaviour,” it said.